Mrs. Deborah Barnes Duke, age 52 died at the Pitt Memorial Hospital in Greenville on Wednesday, November 30, 2011. She was a native Hertford County however was raised in Lasker. She was a medical technologist working at Roanoke Chowan Hospital for some twenty years. She enjoyed knitting, reading and working in the yard.
Preceding her in death is her father, Wallace Wayne Barnes.
Surviving are her daughters, Melissa Beasley Askew and her husband Brad of Wake Forest, NC and Amanda White of Greenville, NC, her mother, Janie Barnes of Lasker, NC one brother, Jeffrey Barnes and his wife Lisa of Lasker, NC. Also surviving is her dog, Shasta.
Debbie and I were double first cousins. My childhood, teen and early adult years were spent almost exclusively with her.
She and I shared so many memories its hard to even pick one. She was my sister, best friend, cohort and sometimes my teacher.
I remember the times we sat on her front stoop painting our fingers and toes psychedelic colors, listening to Black Sabbath and Mott the Hoople and waiving at boys. Also, the times we spent riding around in her Volks, sneaking cigarettes. We shared so many secrets and experiences together in our years together; just the two of us.
Debbie also had a wicked sense of humor. So many times, she would make me laugh crazily over the simplest things. She had a way of looking at things that could be so different than the way I saw them.
I’ve never known a stronger,braver person in my life. What she went through battling cancer, not once but twice, is a true inspiration.
Debbie, I love you and will miss you more than words can ever say. A part of me has died along with you. Rest in peace, my dear, dear cousin.
Growing up always meant visits to NC. Those visits always meant staying with Wayne and Janie, Debbie and Jeff. Even though 9 years of age difference is nothing now, back then when I was 4 or 9 and Debbie was 13 or 18, it seemed like a lot! No matter her mature age, she ALWAYS took the time to spend with me. We played Hangman. We played Rummy until all hours of the night. She took me for rides in her green Bug. She laughed if Jeff wrapped me in a blanket to send me back to Yankee Land. Moving down here, i again shared a home with her while she was back at home. She taught me many things, and facing cancer and chemotherapy now, COURAGE was one of them. She has always been a brave, powerful, and strong woman to whom I’ve always looked up to and loved with a fiercely strong love. My Mama loved her as if she were her own. I feel like I’ve lost a sister.
I sure do miss you my friend.
I would even eat a poison pinwell to prove it.
I need someone to sing with.
Debbie & her family lived next door to us when she was a little girl. I was their babysitter when Wayne played at dances with his band, The Shifters. She was a precious little girl and I’ve never forgotten rocking her to sleep with her sweet little head on my shoulder. I just re-connected with her on Facebook this past year & am so thankful for the times we were able to chat these last few months. As I said on her Facebook wall, I know she’s with her Daddy now and that gives me peace. Wayne, Janie, Debbie, & Jeff – a very special family who will always have a place in my heart.
From the dark to the light, may you travel safely in the arms of Jesus.
I will miss talking to you, but I know there will be no more pain for you. Jesus will now look out for you. Rest in peace. Debbie Burke
I already miss you so much, but I know there is no more pain. I loved you like a sister. No more yellowbrick road. Rest in peace my dear friend. I will always remember.
A precious, beautiful person she was. She will always only be a thought away–just reach in your heart and you will find her.
Amanda and Family,
Just a note to let you know that we are thinking of you in this time of loss. May the wonderful memories you have of your mother comfort you always.
Love you all…